North Texas

Boy Living With Type 1 Diabetes Excels on Baseball Diamond

Colt Cotten was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes when he was 3 years old, but he isn't letting it slow him down.

On the baseball diamond, Colt, 6, is focused on the game and not distracted — not for even a second — about his life-threatening condition.

"It's as simple as blood crashing and him slipping into a diabetic coma, and from there the worst can happen," said his father, Jeff Cotten.

That is the reality doctors gave Jeff and Amber Cotten when they diagnosed Colt with Type 1 diabetes.

They constantly have to monitor Colt's glucose levels, because his body doesn't make enough insulin to control the sugar in his blood.

Activities as simple as running could wreak havoc on his system.

"And the next day it's off the charts, and maybe he was super excited or stressed about a test, or he got sunburn, or he's sick — anything can affect his blood sugar levels," Amber Cotten said.

But Colt loves baseball and uses a secret weapon on the field.

He monitors his own blood glucose levels with his continuous glucose monitoring device that send readings straight to his phone.

"Most people think he's a pretty cool 6 year old with an iPhone," his mother said, laughing.

Colt can see his levels, and know when he's OK or when mom and dad have to step in.

"Sometimes he needs a couple of juices boxes or a couple of candies to bring him up," Amber Cotten said.

They get alerts on their phone, too, but say Colt has dominated his diabetes on and off the diamond.

He has become an advocate for Type 1 diabetes awareness, raising money for annual fundraisers — a passionate 6-year-old with a love for the game and for life.

"It changed my life a lot," Colt said.

Type 1 diabetes is usually diagnosed in children and young adults, and was previously known as juvenile diabetes. Only five percent of people with diabetes have this form of the disease.

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